the recipe sharer

Archive: Apr 2015

Summer berry terrine

This is the prettiest, lightest, most low calorie dessert I can possibly think of. It is a real stunner to look at and dead simple to make. I bet it will be a firm favorite for your outdoor or indoor dinners.

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15 fluid ounces sparkling rose wine
2 oz superfine sugar (caster sugar)
2 x (1/4 oz) sachets of gelatine
1 tbsp fresh lime juice

For the fruit

12 oz sweet strawberries (not too large)
8 oz raspberries
12 oz blackcurrants, blueberries or red currants (or a mixture of them)
Fresh mint leaves

In addition to the ingredients, you will also need two 2 lb loaf tins, 7½ x 4¾ inches x 3½ inches deep, preferably non-stick but anyway with a good surface.

First, prepare the fruit: remove the stalks and halve the strawberries if they are any larger than a quail’s egg. Then mix the fruits together in a large bowl, being very gentle to avoid bruising them.

In a small saucepan heat half the rosé wine until it begins to simmer, then whisk the sugar and gelatine into it. Make sure that everything has dissolved completely before adding the remaining wine and the lime juice. Then pour the liquid into a pitcher and allow it to cool.

While that is happening, lay the mixed fruit in one of the loaf tins – it is worth arranging the bottom layer with the smallest, prettiest-shaped fruit as this will be on top when the terrine is turned out.

Next, pour all but 5 fl oz of the liquid over the fruit. Now lay a sheet of clingfilm over the tin, place the other tin directly on top, then put two unopened tins of tomatoes or something similar to act as weights into the top tin and put the whole lot into the fridge for about 1 hour, or until it has set.

Then warm up the remaining 5 fl oz wine mixture and pour it over the surface of the terrine. Re-cover with clingfilm and return to the fridge overnight to set firm.

When you are ready to serve, turn out the terrine by dipping the tin very briefly in hot water and inverting it on to a plate. Use a very sharp knife (also dipped first into hot water) to cut it into slices. Decorate with the fresh mint sprigs and serve with red berry coulis, chilled pouring cream, crème fraîche or Greek yoghurt.

Hot Cross Scones

I adore hot cross buns but can’t seem to find them in Los Angeles. These hot cross “scones” have the flavor of hot cross buns but are much easier to make and they’re moist and moreish!

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8oz self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
3oz butter, softened
3 tbsp light muscovado sugar (or dark brown sugar)
1/3 cup small golden raisins (sultanas)
1/4 cup cut mixed peel
½ tsp ground mixed spice, see the recipe below. (It’s nothing like allspice)
1 large egg, beaten
3 tbsp buttermilk or 4 tbsp milk, plus extra for brushing
1/4 cup plain flour
2 tbsp caster sugar

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Sift the self-raising flour into a large bowl; rub in the butter with your fingertips. Stir in the muscovado sugar, sultanas, peel and spice.

In a pitcher, beat together the egg, buttermilk and a pinch of salt. Pour into the flour mixture and bring together to make a soft dough.
Lightly dust a work surface with extra flour, then roll out the dough to no thinner than 1/2 inch. Using a 1 inch cutter, stamp out the rounds – try not to twist the cutter as this makes the scones rise unevenly.

Re-roll the trimmings and stamp out more. Transfer to a non-stick baking sheet.
Make the crosses. Mix together the plain flour and 1-2 tablespoons of water and knead to make a smooth dough. Roll out, cut into thin strips and put a cross on top of each scone. Brush with milk, then bake for 15 minutes, until well risen and golden.

For the glaze, dissolve the sugar in 2 tablespoons boiling water. Use to brush the tops of the scones as soon as they come out of the oven. Cool slightly on a wire rack. Eat while warm, or split and toast the next day and serve with a smudge of butter.

Allspice recipe

1 Tbsp ground allspice
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp ground nutmeg
2 tsp ground mace
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground Ginger
Blend all spices together, and store in a sealed jar away from light.